Festivals in Indonesia
In Indonesia people love to celebrate and there are many holidays. The most important festival of the year is Indonesian Independence Day, which Indonesians celebrate on August 17th every year. There are parades, marches and other events. Some holidays are prescribed by the state, these are called state holidays. Interestingly, these are almost always Christian holidays such as Easter, Ascension or Christmas. Although most of the Indonesians are of Muslim faith, Christian festivals are celebrated especially in the regions where there are many Christians. The Muslims too celebrate and of course there are also special Muslim holidays, only these are not decreed by the state. Since there are many people in Indonesia who come from China, the Chinese New Year is also a very big festival. It’s loud and colorful here and everyone likes to celebrate.
Weddings are important events
Anyone getting married in Indonesia organizes a big festival to which not only family and friends are invited. Everyone who knows the bride and groom or the couple’s family comes to the wedding party. In the country, the whole village is often invited. There are weddings that are attended by hundreds of guests. Anyone who has money rents a hall. There are singers and dancers and everyone who comes is fed. A wedding is a very colorful celebration in which the bride and groom often still wear the traditional costume.
People particularly like to party in Bali
People particularly like to celebrate in Bali, there should be more than 200 different festivals. There are many temples on Bali and the temple festivals in particular have a long tradition here. This tradition also includes cockfighting, which is actually forbidden in Indonesia, but has probably already made an exception at temple festivals.
Cigarettes for the gods?
In Bali you can find small offerings in front of shops and at dangerous places such as crossroads. These are placed in a self-made basket made from a banana leaf. They are filled with flowers, rice or even a candy. Some also add a mini portion of their food or a cigarette for the gods. When walking around Bali, be careful not to accidentally step on such an offering!
Swim with demons
In Hindu beliefs, the sea is the habitat of evil spirits and demons. Mountains, on the other hand, are sacred. In the Hindu faith a lot is divided into good and bad or light and dark. That is why you will rarely see very devout Hindus bathing in the sea.
Dance is very important in Indonesia and each region has its own dance style. There is hardly an Indonesian festival where there is no dance performance. Most of the dances have a religious background. The most famous dances are called Kecak, the monkey dance, Legong, the sacrificial dance, and Barong, which is also one of the most famous dances in Bali. The hero resembles a lion and represents the good that the witch Rangda fights. This dance reflects the recurring struggle between good and evil. How it all ends is not revealed, you just have to watch a real dance.
Batik is a special craft that was invented in Indonesia. The word comes from the language spoken on the Indonesian island of Java. Batik is a process used to color textiles such as cloths or clothing. You work with liquid wax. For more information about Indonesia and Asia, please visit shoppingpicks.
The earth is shaking
On December 26, 2004, the earth shook off the Indonesian island of Sumatra. It was a seaquake, that’s an earthquake that takes place in the sea. The consequences were terrible, because a tsunami – that is a gigantic wave – spread and destroyed entire coastal landscapes. Many people who lived directly on the coast died. It is said that this quake was the third strongest ever since earthquakes were measured on the so-called Richter scale. But why does the earth shake so often here?
Indonesia lies at the intersection of three large parts of the earth’s crust. If a plate shifts, the risk of an earthquake is very high. People do not even notice some quakes because the earth shakes very often in this area. But then there can always be major disasters like in 2004, when this giant tidal wave reached the country and carried away many people. By the way, just two years later there was another quake that shook the island of Java.